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organ donation

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussions' started by mac, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    This theme is related and relevant to ALF's central theme of death and the so-called afterlife but doesn't directly involve the one who dies. Or rather it might but only before the event.... ;)

    Organs donated after death can be life-changing and life-saving. In England - my country of birth and where I live much of the time - legislation is about to be introduced that will assume that anyone who dies is a potential organ donor unless they have specifically opted-out. Challenge by family is still possible even when opt-out has not been declared but essentially it's a reversal of previous policies where active opt-in was needed before organs could be removed after death.

    What's the situation where you live?
    How do you feel about organ donation?
    Should we be assumed to be donors unless we declare that we don't want to be?
    Would some organs be acceptable for donation eg corneas but not major organs like heart-and-lungs, kidneys etc?
    Is there a difference between minor and major organs? Why do you think that?
    Do you feel that organ donation causes any spiritual issues?
    Would you oppose the recorded donation wishes of one of your loved ones?
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  2. Monika

    Monika Active Member

    I do not really know about the situation here. The only thing what i have heard is that one shall write self as organ donor if wants his/her organs be re-used after.

    I am not comfortable to say this, but organ donation doesnt feel right to me :( I can not explain more widely why. I was not looking for answer and actually pushing this question away. It is sensitive topic to me as my younger sister who is just 21 might need this soon.

    I think this should be strictly declared that body organs can be used only if "owner" agreed.

    If someday i would decide to be organ donor, all organs could be re-used just strictly not eyes.

    It might be that my feelings about this topic is strongly mixed with my feeling of reasons in life. Never coincidences. I believe it does not exist. So if there is a reason (which i might not know by this day) i think my organs will be re-used if needed with no matter how i feel or think now.

    I would say it might have some affects to the person who gets the organ (not for donor). Don't know if spiritual. Maybe if it is said that everything is energy, vibrations, might be that the person who gets new organ will need some time to addapt as the organ still has been charged by vibrations of previous owner. Maybe after some time organ takes vibrations of new body system it was "installed" in.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  3. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    That's how it used to be in England but change is imminent. It's an attempt to avoid wastage of organs that could help others in dire need.

    I think many others will feel similar.

    It's an emotive subject and there is no right and no wrong in the matter - only what feels right or wrong for any particular individual but most donations are preceded by the sad death of someone else. I hope that your sister does not need such help after all but if she does I also hope the necessary organ(s) will be available.

    It's another emotive issue and I understand both sides of the argument. There's no certainty that changing English law will result in more organs becoming available than there might be if other ways of encouragement were used.

    I've been on our UK donor list for several decades and anyone could have had anyof my 'bits'. But now I'm almost 71 and most of them will be unsuitable although I've registered my body for any kind of medical use. Even old cadavers like mine are suitable for that! ;)


    There are accounts of recipients feeling uncomfortable with the organs they have been given but whether that is because of actual effects - spiritual, energy or whatever - or whether it's a psychological issue for the recipient is probably impossible to be certain about.
    Monika likes this.
  4. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    Hmmm... there are cases in the literature of organ recipients - I think most often heart recipients - who took on some of the interests and other personal characteristics of the donor. I don't have a strong opinion either way, although I assume that by the time I die I will be so geriatric that no one would want my organs anyway. But all of this is more complex than we know! And organs are not just pieces of matter, but rather during life they were imbued with spirit. Who is to say that doesn't continue after death if those organs don't actually die?
  5. genewardsmith

    genewardsmith Active Member

    I've long thought that the reason for the supposed "cell memory" of donated organs is that a connection with a spirit is formed. If this is problematic, I would suggest more for the spirit in question, who may be tied to earth more than desired, than for the recipient.
  6. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    It's a gray area in terms of what constitutes death in terms of the donated organ - it's a gray enough area in overall terms and something we've debated here before.

    Although we say the severing of the so-called silver cord marks the point of 'no-return' of an individual it may be that some spirits maintain a loose, psychic connection with their body for a time after physical death. That spirit may not experience total separation during that time and it's possible that removal of an organ causes temporary discomfort. Apologies for vagueness but I'm finding it hard to be more definitive.

    I think it's reasonable that some form of influence by a spirit might continue to be felt and could account for stories of organ recipients with physical and/or emotional characteristics that are similar to those of the donor.

    Roberta mentioned the heart but a few years back the recipient of an arm/hand transplant (I think it might have been both arms) was reported to be having great difficulty adapting to seeing the arms of someone else grafted to his body and (I think) eventually had them removed. Whether that was down to the receiver's emotional response to such major surgery with consequential major appearance change, or the effect of a continuing involvement of the spirit of the donor, seems impossible to decide. Surgery, with such obvious physical changes, may be more traumatic than, for example, a kidney transplant.

    Some kidney and partial liver transplants are even from living donors - what's the situation there one might ask?
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2018
  7. pandora97

    pandora97 Well-Known Member

    And what about the cases where the patient is "brain dead" and known to be an organ donor so is being artificially kept alive with machines until the medical personnel or the recipient are ready for the organs to be harvested. Is it possible for the silver cord to be severed in this situation?:(
  8. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    very good points

    What prompted my thread was a recent BBC Radio4 programme made by the sister of a young woman who had died during the night after an epiletic fit. She interviewed her mother and father and they all reflected on what had happened. After her near death paramedics had managed to re-start her heart although it was later found there was no brain stem activity. For her organs to be used it was necessary for circulation to be maintained and that is what happened, some of her organs being used for transplantation.

    I should hate to be faced with such a decision under such desperately sad circumstances and the whole situation concerning rights of the family, those of the deceased and the way the donation rules are about to change were examined.

    The aspect of separation of the animating spirit from the physical body was not considered and I think folk here will understand why. Even we who have some appreciation of these issues will likely have very different views about the many issues involved about such an emotive subject.
  9. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    Does anyone know the situation in their own country/state/province/territory? I'm guessing in the USA things will vary greatly from state to state and it may be similar elsewhere in the world.
  10. SashaS

    SashaS Member

  11. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    Perhaps humankind will need to accept that although we might be able to do certain things it doesn't automatically follow that we should do them? We may have to draw lines in the sand which we won't cross.....
    bluebird and SashaS like this.
  12. pandora97

    pandora97 Well-Known Member

    Right now in my state, in the Midwest US, you are required to indicate on your drivers license or state identification card that you are a donor. I believe it is up to the family (assuming they are available) if you have not indicated one way or the other. Otherwise, I'm not entirely sure....
  13. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    In cases like this, the cord might or might not have been severed. We are told that a severed cord cannot be reattached; but if it isn't severed, then who knows?
  14. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    I'm somewhat surprised there have been so few reactions about this often emotive subject.
  15. Bill Z

    Bill Z Active Member

    I had to renew my drivers license and registration today. My registration expired almost a year ago around the time Susie went home, I've been forgetting a lot of stuff and not keeping track of things as I did when She was here. physically.
    There was a box to check about organ donations and I checked no. I had checked yes in the past. I consider myself service to others but something about this bothers me on a spiritual level that I don't really understand. I do not want anyone's organs installed in me to keep alive. When it's time, it's time.
    pandora97 likes this.
  16. pandora97

    pandora97 Well-Known Member

    I'm with you Bill. I don't think I will either.:(

    This is a difficult decision for anyone to make. Mac, maybe there have been so few reactions because this is one of those "on the fence" issues. You can see the donors hesitation and numerous concerns but you can also empathize with the patient needing the organ and their families. What to do..............what to do.......???:(
    Bill Z likes this.
  17. Bill Z

    Bill Z Active Member

    Thanks Pandora, This is something I wanted to reply to but for some reason it freaked me out too much. Falun Gung (sp?) their organs are supposedly being harvested by China while they are alive.....there was also reports of religious groups doing this to the living. I have no idea..
  18. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    Well, no it's not for everyone, pandora. I certainly haven't found it difficult at all but I accept that many agonise over it. Hence the dearth of donated organs.

    I am somewhat surprised, though, that folk who ought to have a measure of understanding of death-and-what-follows find it a difficult issue even to discuss. For anyone who rejects survival outright it ought to be less hard as they have no reason to feel anything about their bodies - "when yer dead yer dead" goes the mantra so why be concerned what happens to your body?

    For the rest who really have no clarity about whether they understand, or could ever accept, the notion of survival I can understand their dilemma. For them, separating body and soul must be a near-impossible task with loved remaining in their minds only as the bodies they used to know. Perhaps we have many members in this latter category.
  19. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    There will always be criminals seeking to make money from others' difficulties but criminally harvesting organs for profit isn't what we're talking about in this thread.
  20. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    Even if we register as organ donors we are under no obligation to accept someone else's donated organs if we were chronically sick and facing death.

    As for being of service to others one has only to read the uplifting stories of individuals close to death, chronically and seriously sick, whose lives are turned around by receiving a donated organ. Of what better service could we be than that?

    Apologies - I'm not intending to badger anyone. :oops:

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